Crime Watch

Officials identify last victim of 2017's "Killer Kern"

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. - 2017 tied the highest number of deaths in the Kern River with 15. Over the weekend, the coroner identified the last victim of the "Killer Kern."

Juan Torrez, 34, was reported missing in the river June 3 near Hart Park after family says he fell off a raft. Since his disappearance, search and rescue crews held several operations to find his body. A final effort in January was unsuccessful.

When the river dried up, crews recovered a body on March 8, a half-mile west of N. Chester Avenue. The coroner was able to identify Torrez through dental records.  

17 News has tracked Kern River deaths and compiled our data in the following interactive map:

 


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